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RefWatch – Bolton Wanderers Vs Arsenal (01/02/2012 – 20:00)



Untold Arsenal on Twitter @UntoldArsenal


By DogFace

  • Referee: Chris Foy
  • Assistant 1: Gary Beswick
  • Assistant 2: Simon Bennett
  • 4th Official: Peter Walton

Good morning stat-fans and welcome to RefWatch… and oh man what a week it has been – I have been knee deep in data again and working with Walter and writing software to import his Ref Review data into a database.

Phase 1 is complete on this but it’s taken up pretty much every minute of my spare time. On the plus side we now have an untold Ref Review article table generator that is 100% data driven AND I now have something I can start to model into the Ref Watch series… on the minus side I haven’t had much time to knock this article up and, quite frankly, I’m feeling a bit burnt out.

Let’s check out the markets; not that it matters that much this time as we are playing midweek in a group of other matches and the big players that could influence the major markets are all spending time with their family celebrating the lunar year of the dragon.

Asian Handicap market The Under/Over market:
Bolton Wanderers Handicap Arsenal
2.050 3/4 – 0 1.850
Over Handicap Under
1.800 2 3/4 2.1000

Let’s have a look at the Referee:

  • Full name: Christopher J Foy
  • Date of birth: 20-Nov-1962 (Age 50)
  • Place of birth: St. Helens, Lancashire
  • Resides: Merseyside
  • EPL/ECH Referee Since: 2000/2001
  • EPL/ECH Games to date: 240

Chris Foy
Ooh stick you; your mama too… and your daddy

It’s Chris Foy again… look at that – no FIFA badge, that’s a good start – you remember him from the excellent Ref Review series:

Season Score Match
2010/2011 50.000% Arsenal 2 – 0 Wolverhampton Wanderers
2011/2012 87.180% Manchester City 3 – 1 Newcastle United
2011/2012 51.850% Stoke City 2 – 1 Tottenham Hotspur
2011/2012 68.000% Queens Park Rangers 1 – 0 Chelsea
Average Score: 64.258%

Let’s check out his stats!

FPB = Fouls Per Booking (vertical axis)
BPM = Bookings Per Match(line width)
AHS = Asian Handicap Swing i.e. the deviation from the expected result(vertical axis)
PPG = Points Per Game(line width)
Therefore a high thin line for FPB/BPM would indicate a lot of fouls and very little bookings – and a low thin line for AHS/PPG would indicate an underperformance against the betting line and very few points taken.

Chris Foy has had 25 games for Bolton Wanderers consisting of 7 wins, 4 draws and 14 losses.

Bolton Wanderers are currently in 25th in Chris Foy’s personal Points Per Game League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the EPL/ECH, with an average of 1.00 PPG.

In Chris Foy’s personal Handicap Swing League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the EPL/ECH, Bolton Wanderers come 16th with an average negative swing of -0.08.

Bolton Wanderers are currently in 21st in Chris Foy’s personal Booking’s Per Match League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the EPL/ECH, with an overall average of 1.48 BPM.

In Chris Foy’s personal Fouls Per Booking League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the EPL/ECH, Bolton Wanderers come 14th with an overall average of 8.49 FPB.

Bolton have had a very poor run of form under Chris Foy and it’s just getting worse, we can also see from the graph [above] that Chris Foy is taking a more punitive approach to Bolton to that of their opposition and this seems to correlate directly with their form which dwindles to nothing this season.

The colour of the line represents the player type.
The position of the line against the vertical axis will indicate the average time of the booking and the thickness of the line indicates the average number of bookings of players in that position.
Therefore a high fat orange line would indicate that the referee often books the specified teams defence out of the challenge early, a low thin line or no line would indicate the opposite.  The number of minutes bottoms out at 100 to indicate no bookings.

Above is a seasonal breakdown on how, when and where Bolton Wanderers took all their bookings under Chris Foy.

Again we can see a clear trend over the last few seasons in that Bolton are taking more bookings in the midfield and steadily earlier in the match. This could be a result of the tactic of ‘rotational fouling’ that we have seen and certain referee’s getting wise to it?

The colour of the line represents the player type.
The position of the line against the vertical axis will indicate the average time of the booking and the thickness of the line indicates the average number of bookings of players in that position.
Therefore a high fat orange line would indicate that the referee often books the specified teams defence out of the challenge early, a low thin line or no line would indicate the opposite.  The number of minutes bottoms out at 100 to indicate no bookings.

Above is a seasonal breakdown on how, when and where Bolton Wanderers’s opposition took all their bookings under Chris Foy.

Booking’s to Bolton’s opposition under Chris Foy are trending later and fewer – this season there have been a few in the midfield averaging out around the 80 minute mark.

FPB = Fouls Per Booking (vertical axis)
BPM = Bookings Per Match(line width)
AHS = Asian Handicap Swing i.e. the deviation from the expected result(vertical axis)
PPG = Points Per Game(line width)
Therefore a high thin line for FPB/BPM would indicate a lot of fouls and very little bookings – and a low thin line for AHS/PPG would indicate an underperformance against the betting line and very few points taken.

Chris Foy has had 18 games for Arsenal consisting of 16 wins, 1 draw and 1 loss.

Arsenal are currently in 1st in Chris Foy’s personal Points Per Game League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the EPL/ECH, with an average of 2.72 PPG.

In Chris Foy’s personal Handicap Swing League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the EPL/ECH, Arsenal come 9th with an average positive swing of 0.12.

Arsenal are currently in 1st in Chris Foy’s personal Booking’s Per Match League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the EPL/ECH, with an overall average of 0.83 BPM.

In Chris Foy’s personal Fouls Per Booking League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the EPL/ECH, Arsenal come 6th with an overall average of 11.60 FPB.

Ahh – I like those numbers, 18 games averaging out at 2.72 PPG – what is interesting though is that Arsenal don’t obviously ‘over perform’ under Foy – as you can see, we come 9th in the overall the performance league which is calculated from the betting line handicap.

This, I suspect, leads a lot of Arsenal fans to slag Chris Foy off as, yes, we have had some bad decisions over the years from him and I can recall some matches under this referee that seemed shocking… yet we still won [contrast and compare with the recent form of Phil Dowd] – so, it seems in the statistics at least, he’s not gone out of his way to mug us blind?

All this might explain why this is the PGMOL (with their totally random and transparent selection procedures) have seen fit to make this the FIRST EPL game this season in which we have seen Chris Foy and have ensured that we have had to suffer the likes of Dean, Dowd and Webb and (insert statistically worst case scenario referee name here) umpteen times?

The colour of the line represents the player type.
The position of the line against the vertical axis will indicate the average time of the booking and the thickness of the line indicates the average number of bookings of players in that position.
Therefore a high fat orange line would indicate that the referee often books the specified teams defence out of the challenge early, a low thin line or no line would indicate the opposite.  The number of minutes bottoms out at 100 to indicate no bookings.

Above is a seasonal breakdown on how, when and where Arsenal took all their bookings under Chris Foy.

As you can see there are no real trends to speak of other than, overall, are bookings are getting fewer and later on in the game.

The colour of the line represents the player type.
The position of the line against the vertical axis will indicate the average time of the booking and the thickness of the line indicates the average number of bookings of players in that position.
Therefore a high fat orange line would indicate that the referee often books the specified teams defence out of the challenge early, a low thin line or no line would indicate the opposite.  The number of minutes bottoms out at 100 to indicate no bookings.

Above is a seasonal breakdown on how, when and where Arsenal’s opposition took all their bookings under Chris Foy.

Overall we are seeing more bookings to our opposition that are across the board in the Midfield, Attack, Defence and some late ones for substitutes too.

Let’s move on now to check out how Chris Foy performs against selected teams in the EPL:

The ine thickness represents the average Points Per Game and the position of the line against the vertical axis represents the average swing againd the handicap.

Wow – some massive swings from Chelsea there – Arsenal and Manchester United are both solid performers and both yet to have a game this season… Manchester City are on the up and Bolton are well – not looking so good.

The Predictortron gives Bolton Wanderers a -1.417789 disadvantage… and who am I to argue?


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24 comments to RefWatch – Bolton Wanderers Vs Arsenal (01/02/2012 – 20:00)

  • WalterBroeckx

    This doesn’t look bad.

    A good question is why did we have to wait 22 games to get this ref as we have been seing Dean 3 or 4 times so far?

    Not that I am a big fan of Foy to be honest but so far he has not been out there to get us

  • Sammy The Snake

    Go Gunners!

  • Arun

    @ Walter, referees are appointed ‘randomly’. You know what I mean.
    Back to game, it’s another must win game and cut the gap to 3 with 15 to play.

  • Johnny Deigh

    I remember earlier this season when we played Bolton that I was pleasantly surprised that they really behaved themselves – they didn’t fly in with dangerous lunging tackles like they have often done in the past. Arsenal ran out easy winners and Owen Coyle seemed a little despondent.

    I suspected after that match that Wenger might have told Coyle that he would loan him a good player in January if Bolton would play fairly. And wouldn’t you know it? Off goes Ryo to the Trotters. Personally, I was thinking it might have been the Ox, but thankfully for us the Ox has broken into the starting 11.

  • Tasos

    The stats look good for us and not so good for Bolton, the reliable Predictortron gives us the edge but this is the EPL and we know the agenda by now, trust no official and take nothing for granted in this League where Arsenal are concerned.

    This game takes on added importance with Chelsea dropping points against Swansea last night, Arsenal will have the opportunity too draw level with the Blues “IF” we can win our next two games. Chelsea don’t play until Sunday when they entertain Man Utd.

    Chris Foy has already had a major influence on at least one EPL game I have witnessed this season, I hope we are not the sufferers from a similar biased performance.

  • Mandy Dodd

    another ref giving us very little…..

  • @Mandy I’m not sure we can look to the ref for this under-performance… but I will wait for the review.

  • Anne

    @The Predictortron:

    I’m mad at you. You had me looking for an Arsenal victory 🙂

    Perhaps, with the low liquidity in the gambling markets and the Chinese new year and all that, the outcome of this match was less “predictable” than usual? Or it allowed the opportunity for some other factors to be at work?

    If I had to guess, I’d say that the team was mainly just tired after the Villa match, so I guess I can let it slide this time… 🙂

  • dan

    Same old story with Walcott!!!

  • Mandy dodd

    True dogface, was very annoyed at the tv booking, amongst other things but guess they could in some eyes have had a pen near the end.
    Just shows how much we miss a cesc, nasri, wilshere type, rambo has done well this season i know, but the passing was very askew at times today and over the game as a whole, we were not unlocking them. I know it was not sound business but I think we are now seeing why wenger wanted to keep nasri, even if it meant losing him for nothing, allegedly, especially with jack injured and players of that type seemingly unobtainable for us. And yes, I am aware of nasris faults but still , no point crying over spilt milk.
    Could be a long few months if this evening anything to go by.

  • I know Anne – we had 3 points on a plate there… the way I saw it (and I’m no expert) is that Bolton set up very well against us and man-marked us like terriers – we just couldn’t finish our chances when they came, we got frustrated and made mistakes.

    Atreta was great though, and Sagna – Walcott and Ramsey I think could have done better.

  • DC

    The ref actually helped us out on this occasion! Most other refs, rightly of wrongly, would’ve given a pen for Woj’s challenge on Davis.
    Nevertheless, we should’ve been out of site after 25 mins but for poor finishing yet again! Another painful 2 points dropped away from home and now in 7th with Liverpool and Newcastle well in the mix for 4th place!
    More composure needed in front of goal please!

  • DC

    @Mandy Dodd & Dogface,
    I don’t think that creating chances was the problem a bit more composure in front of goal (especially from Theo, yet again) would have been enough, yet again!

  • Mandy dodd

    We created a lot early on yes, but a couple of rvp chances aside, seemed to run out of steam in the second half, and for all our possession, could have easily ended up losing that game.
    Some do need more composure in front of goal, but when things are not going our way, we look so predictable. Aoc has is doing well, gervinho added unpredictability and will hopefully do again soon, but another who lacks composure in front of goal. But I just think this team is susceptible to going into ruts if things are not going our way. Some are being over played, as jack was last year which is a worry in itself but it seems there are just too many in the squad who are not really up to it, to help out the players carrying the burden.
    Just hope we get back to winning ways at the weekend and some confidence returns to some, we have a lot of ground to make up, failing in our main aim will bring huge recriminations at the seasons end and a situation I don’t even want to think about now.
    We need more goals, clearly, rvp cannot do everything, not enough others are really contributing. Maybe if the likes of park really cannot be trusted, may be worth giving afobe a go when Henry departs?

  • DC

    The fatigue is certainly becoming a regular problem during matches and that does need to be addressed. The team is nowhere near as fit this year as it used to be. Why that is, I don’t know but like some have said, i guess it’s all due to being overplayed with no proper rotational rest both in a physical and mental sense. Additionally, the team is not retaining the ball as well as they should so they are having to work harder and expend more energy defending. The second half of the ManU and Villa matches involved alot of adrenaline I’m sure!

  • Mandy dodd

    They do look fatigued, but standing to be corrected I think some of the recent injuries have been at a near unprecedented level, even for us. Other players are not ready, untrusted , or the strange case that is park. Meaning some have been over played, including the one we worry most about. I am hoping for a happy ending, but get the feeling this is just developing into one of those seasons for the team, they have shown determination but seems like little has gone right for them in the last year or so. Injuries, refs, extremely key players leaving, investment, board room issues, you can look at all of it, but how ever you look at it, things just have not gone our way. Still, the season is not over yet, I am convinced this team have some fight in them.

  • DC

    @Mandy Dodd,
    Hopefully those players that have come, and will be coming, back will provide the much needed freshness and quality for the critical home stretch. Fatigue should not be a problem for them, and I include the two boys who went to the African Cup of Nations in that hope!
    From your other posting, I agree with your assessment of the right-back situation and how it has affected Walcott. As Sagna gets more match fitness, i’m sure his overlapping runs will become more frequent (as they usually are) and that will enhance and assist Theo in raising his confidence against the opposition fullbacks!

  • DC

    Our excellent wing play was the most significant aspect of our play when we went on our unbeaten run and why we were able to score so many goals! Since the injuries and Gervinho’s absence, it has become near non-existant as we try to play our way through the middle in our old, frustrating and predictable way! Defences were widened and spaces were more easily found and exploited by RVP and the runners from deep!

  • Arvind

    The worst thing about yesterday was how much we hurried things. Everyone bar Arteta and maybe RVP were trying Hollywood passes of 25 yards or more. No one kept it simple and passed it around. Having said all that we should have won that game with the number of chances we created. We need bodies in midfield desperately and maybe Eisfeld can give us a nice surprise and help us out this season itself. Maybe. I think the only reason we bought him early was because Wilshere’s out for the season..more or less and

    Ramsey is just not capable of carrying the burden throughout the season. He could have had at least 7-8 goals by now considering the positions he gets into. He will eventually get there but for now..he’s still learning. I’d put Coquelin in there and push Arteta further forward tbf. We really need goals.

    And why is Park not playing? He hasn’t looked that awful whenever he’s played tbf. It makes me feel its a big time marketing signing and nothing more. Hope I am wrong.

  • DC

    @Arvind,
    I agree, and I just do not understand this Park thing at all?!

  • Anne

    @DogFace:

    I find myself saying that too often about Walcott and Ramsey lately. But hopefully we’ll get back on the ball.

  • Arvind

    @Anne,All: Its just the finishing that is missing from Ramsey right now; and that is because he is not relaxing and trying too hard in front of goal. It’ll come; maybe next season.

    Theo is a funny one though. He has 2 major attributes; his pace and his finishing. When either goes, he becomes very very average. Yes his overall play has improved no doubt; but those remain his major attributes. So he just needs to relax (Is this recurring or what?) and be calm in front of goal.

    Come to think of it; the whole team needs to relax. The Bolton game was dreadful from that perspective – everyone was in a major hurry. Hopefully we eke a 1-0 out against Blackburn tomorrow. An early goal would help..really.

  • Anne

    Wondering what people might think about the second article in this link… Seriously, it’s been a mystery to me ever since it was published:

    http://blog.emiratesstadium.info/archives/14090

  • Anne

    By the way, if no one even takes a look at the link, I’ll be seriously pissed off 🙂